The Khmer Kings and the History of Cambodia: BOOK II - 1595 to the Contemporary Period
Book II is the most comprehensive and detailed study of Khmer civilization available, from 1595 CE to the Contemporary Period. Even after the fall of Angkor, the kingdom remained relatively strong until the Ayutthayan King Naresuan conquered Longvek in 1594. When his armies returned to Ayutthaya, they did permanent damage to Cambodia by forcibly taking Khmer craftsmen and scholars, leaders of many great Khmer families, and all the Khmer treasures including sacred manuscripts, chronicles, and records of laws, customs and traditions.
In the centuries that followed, the threat from Siamese hegemony continued growing until King Norodom petitioned France for protection.The French Protectorate Period began in 1863, but transformed into the French Colonial Period as controls increased. Finally, King Sihanouk succeeded in gaining independence for Cambodia on 9 November 1953.
Book II details how ancient relationships between Cambodia, Thailand, and Vietnam evolved in the modern era. The book examines how Cambodia lost Kampuchea Krom/Cochinchina, how the Khmer people were forced to build the Vinh Te canal, and how Thailand and Vietnam used Cambodia as the battlefield to prop up Khmer monarchs that they controlled. Finally, we examine the 20th century birth of the Khmer communist party, the central issues of Pol Pot's elimination of his communist comrades in the context of the war that ensued, and the complex regime changes between the Khmer Republic, Democratic Kampuchea (i.e. the Khmer Rouge), the People's Republic of Kampuchea under Vietnamese occupation, and the current Kingdom of Cambodia.
Book II is supplemented with nearly one hundred color tables, charts, photos and diagrams, references, bibliography and full index.
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